A long-running dispute over encroachment of a public
walking track on to private land is almost resolved.
The Queenstown Lakes District Council constructed a section
of the Wanaka-Glendhu Bay Track from Damper Bay to Glendhu
Bay in 2009. The following year, the council was told the
track formed had encroached in five places on to the
adjoining property owned by Damper Bay Estates Ltd.
The council has been working with Damper Bay over the past
two years to resolve the encroachments, which ranged from
0.1m to 9.3m.
The track deviation from the original outline plan and issues
about the quality of track construction on the boundary with
Damper Bay's land prompted an application for a High Court
judicial review of the track construction consents. This was
settled after mediation and the production of a new outline
plan, showing a realignment of part of the track. In a report
to the Wanaka Community Board, QLDC community services
general manager Paul Wilson said it was unclear how the
encroachments come about, but it was possible the ''trial
alignment or boundary pegs were moved or there was some error
in either survey or construction''.
The Department of Conservation had previously negotiated an
easement as part of tenure review from Damper Bay to Glendhu
Bay some distance away from the formed trail. However, it was
not used, as it was restricted to walkers only.
As part of a December 2012 proposal by council and agreed to
by Damper Bay Estates Ltd, the track has now been realigned
back on to council land at three of the encroachments, which
were considered the easiest to resolve.
The council is now in the process of uplifting the existing
easement, to be replaced with an easement at QLDC's cost over
the remaining two encroachments, which would have involved
extensive earthworks to resolve.
Mr Wilson estimated the final cost of the realignment work to
be about $30,000. Because the work was not budgeted for, it
has been funded from the Albert Town Lagoon Track budget of
''The remaining funding available [for the Albert Town
project] will be sufficient to form the proposed high trail
only,'' Mr Wilson said.